Fresno State hosts UNLV on Friday Night in a Mountain West Conference matchup. The Bulldogs are a hefty 30.5 point favorite with a total of 58. Kickoff is set for 10 PM EST and the game can be seen on CBS Sports Network.
Fresno State is turning some heads early in the 2021 college football season. They are 3-1 with their only loss coming to #3 Oregon. Last week they knocked off UCLA 40-37. Their other two wins came against weak opponents, UCONN and Cal poly.
UNLV is 0-3 with losses to Arizona State, Iowa State and Eastern Washington. A rough start for the Rebels and this is coming after a 2020 season which saw them go winless at 0-6.
Head to Head History
head-to-head history (lined games): 11/ 7/2020 Fresno State 40 -11.5 at UNLV 27 10/18/2019 UNLV 27 +15.0 at Fresno State 56 11/ 3/2018 Fresno State 48 -27.0 at UNLV 3 10/28/2017 UNLV 26 +21.5 at Fresno State 16 10/ 1/2016 Fresno State 20 + 9.5 at UNLV 45 10/16/2015 UNLV 28 - 5.5 at Fresno State 31 10/10/2014 Fresno State 27 -10.0 at UNLV 30 10/19/2013 UNLV 14 +25.0 at Fresno State 38 10/25/1997 UNLV 28 +11.5 at Fresno State 46 10/26/1996 Fresno State 34 -18.0 at UNLV 23 average outcome: UNLV 25.1 Fresno State 35.6 margin = 10.50 time-weighted average outcome: UNLV 24.8 Fresno State 36.9 margin = 12.06 average result when the home team is Fresno State UNLV 24.6 Fresno State 37.4 margin = 12.80 average result when the home team is UNLV Fresno State 33.8 UNLV 25.6 margin = -8.20 50.00 % of games went Over 50.00 % went Over at Fresno State (since 2013 ) average total points per game = 60.70 time-weighted average total = 61.65 the home team covered 60.00 % of the time the road team covered 40.00 % of the time Ave ATS differential = 1.25 the favorite covered 50.00 % of the time the underdog covered 50.00 % of the time Ave ATS differential = -0.55 the favorite won SU 70.00 % of the time UNLV covered 50.00 % of the time Fresno State covered 50.00 % of the time Fresno State covered 60.00 % of the time at home Fresno State covered 50.00 % of the time as home favorites
Is 30 Points Too Many?
As you can see above, the series as of late, has belonged to Fresno State. The last three years the games haven’t been close. Judging from the way each team has started it certainly looks as though that trend will continue.
But keep in mind, if you had given UNLV 30 points in each of the 10 games in this series, they would have gone 9-1 against the spread. Likewise, had you given UNLV 30 points in their 6 losses last year, they would have gone 5-1 against the spread and the one they lost would have been by 1 point.
Our model has Fresno State winning comfortably, but not by more than 30. It’s always difficult to back a bad football team. In fact, in the real world, we never do. There are far better investments on the board each week.
That said, our opinion here is that there’s some value in the UNLV side in this spot. Too many points in a game that might not get Fresno State’s best effort.